Eustoma grandiflorum, commonly called lisianthus is regarded as a unique cut flower for its
exceptional, rose-like beauty and incredible vase life. It grows on erect single to sometimes branching stems rising 12 inches up to 3 foot tall. Large gentian-like bell-shaped flowers (to 2 inches across) with flaring petal-like lobes bloom in summer from the upper leaf axils. It takes about 5 months from planting to first bloom, all of which basically precludes direct sowing in the ground in spring. Though a perennial in their native habitat of the southwestern United State, Lisianthus is best grown as an annual. Zone 8b-11. Prefers well-drained soil high in organic matter.